Category: SCF Leader of the Year
Winner: Pietro Solazzo, Knorr-Bremse
The SCF Leader of the Year award for 2020 goes to Pietro Solazzo, corporate treasurer at Knorr-Bremse.
Solazzo has been at the forefront of developments in supply chain finance, pioneering financing techniques at Knorr-Bremse well ahead of the competition since joining the German manufacturer of rail and vehicle braking systems in 2010.
During his time at the company he implemented five separate account receivables (AR) programmes within the group and is active in developing the use of inventory financing. His work also supported the continued growth of the company’s existing and market-leading confirmed payables programme set up in conjunction with Deutsche Bank.
While Knorr-Bremse was already ahead of the curve with the launch of the SCF programme in 2007, Solazzo has overseen the global growth of this platform from covering just a few Knorr-Bremse entities to covering 41 business arms.
Most recently, he has pushed forward the development of the purchase order financing concept – expanding SCF beyond its traditional reverse factoring role and further upstream. He is also working on new concepts related to compliant accountancy practices for off-balance sheet inventory financing.
He is currently leading efforts for Knorr Bremse’s involvement in the new Trade Information Network (TIN), a multi-bank multi-corporate network set up in 2019. The development of this network will not only benefit Knorr Bremse, but help other corporates gain the best price for the sale of their receivables from different financing partners.
“There is no SCF provider who has not yet asked for Pietro Solazzo’s advice,” said one nominator in their entry form.
“He is a true visionary and has an unparalleled commitment to SCF and is involved in several of SCF’s most innovative projects,” the nomination continued.
Michael Henke, professor at the Fraunhofer Institute, board member of the SCF Community and a judge on this year’s panel, added: “Knorr Bremse has been using supply chain finance solutions for some time. As a result, Pietro Solazzo plays an important role in shaping global supply chains and making a significant contribution in international trade financing.”
Solazzo is a regular at SCF events, often giving academic and market-related lectures. He is also a leading member of the working capital management working group at the University of St Gallen in Switzerland and a member of the German-Italian Chamber of Commerce in Munich and Stuttgart.
This is the fifth year in which the SCF Awards judging panel has presented a ‘Leader of the Year’ award to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the development of supply chain finance.
Last year the award was given to Sunil William Mascarenhas for his work with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) where he held an advisory role and was responsible for launching multiple SCF programmes across key Asian markets, including Bangladesh, Vietnam and Mongolia.
The previous year was given to Professor Hua Song of Renmin University of China in Beijing.